Uniqlo South Coast Plaza – Grand Opening

Uniqlo opened to a decent amount of traffic in Orange County, CA on September 5, 2014. I headed over to the South Coast Plaza location after work to check out the new space. See a Hyperlapse walkthrough of the store. On this trip I was initially looking for the Ines de La Fressange fall collection, but was pleasantly surprised by the Pure Blue Japan Project wardrobe. Here’s some pictures and anecdotes from both:

Pure Blue Japan Project women’s section. Overalls, shorts, and an interesting range of slim-fit boyfriend and skinny jeans (some distressed)

Women’s shirting. The striped and gingham shirts are rough-textured heavy cotton shirts. The light white chambray pictured in the close-up shot is soft and comfortable, but the cropped version shown in the item list hereย features a slightly dropped shoulder that I don’t quite like. Still at first touch the shirts feel really nice and I don’t doubt that these will move quickly.

Women’s Pure Blue Japan slub stripe crew neck half sleeve teesย were comfortable, but the sleeve length was a little odd on me (see fit on Instagram) and I didn’t get a picture of the collar, but it was laying oddly across the back of my neck. As embarrassing as this sounds, the fit seemed strained across the chest, fine in the waist, and oddly loose in the neck and shoulders. It may not work on my anatomy, but some of you might fit it really well.

The back wall held the different denim cuts (not photographed) and these shorts in the third shot. I really liked these shorts, but the rear pockets were set a little too low, not to mention the waistband gapped in the back. If I went down one size, I wouldn’t be able to get it around my hips. The cuffs are not sewn; the shorts unroll to a bermuda-like length (mid thigh for me, about 2-3 inches above the knee.)


Some fits from the dressing room:

1. white rayon long sleeve blouse: bought the black one in XS, $29.99. It will be going back because while the shoulders fit, the button placement causes bra peekaboos. No go.
2. black rayon short sleeve dress: I don’t know why I was expecting it to fit like my IDLF wrap dress (I think because there is a waist tie.) It looks ok here, but it ties at the belly button–not my narrowest area. I may go back to try the XS but I predict that the arms and upper chest will be tight in the XS. We shall see. The rayon items at Uniqlo tend to be cut bigger so maybe sizing down will be OK.
3. IDLF denim long sleeve dress: please click on the link to see the fit on the model. She must be very tall. I am 5’1″. The small fits like a long duster-coat on me. I also got some strong Kinfolk-y vibes wearing this dress and had a good giggle at the ridiculousness. I believe last spring they also released a cotton lawn IDLF dress that was cut as long.
4. gray modal sweat long sleeve blouson: from online I already knew I wouldn’t be a fan of the bat-wing/dolman sleeve going on in this sweatshirt. It’s a darn shame because the modal is so comfortable and stretchy and the arms and waist fit, but I cannot stand the extra fabric around my arm pits. On sale online for $19.99.
5. women’s denim long sleeve shirt: just about everything is ok in XS except for the fit around the hips (too tight.) That last button is straining. Going up a size means the small will be too wide at the shoulders. I have enough of my old shirts from my previous size to approximate the “boyfriend” fit.
6. IDLF cotton twill stand collar long sleeve shirt: gosh, Uniqlo is fond of very straightforward but long product names! excellent fabric feel, but pop-over shirts bug me–are you a button down or are you a pull-over?! At least fit was not atrociously large for the IDLF collection.

Not photographed:

7. women’s chino ankle length pants: rise was too low to be comfortable and I picked the wrong size (4.) I should be looking at the 2 or even the 0. On my height most “ankle” length pants are full length anyway. The green color is fun for fall though, but I typically wear my greens in outerwear as opposed to bottoms.

What I ended up buying:

8. women’s sweat long sleeve pulloverย (03 gray): the XS is still a relaxed fit. I’m picky about terrycloth and how the loops feel on skin–I had some Forever 21 cheap striped terry sweatshirts that were super rough on the skin for the longest time until somehow the fibers just wore down. The Uniqlo sweatshirt has been comfy from the get-go: I make it a point to try it on sans layering so I can predict what it feels like against me. Let’s hope it keeps its shape post-wash.
9. women’s ultra seamless shorts (bikini): I’ve always wanted to try a pair of these. I can’t tell if it’s really no-show (eek.) I did notice that the edges around the leg tend to roll when I move around. Will have to wear these on a running or climbing day to see if it’s good for sports (it reminds me of Under Armour tech underwear, but I haven’t tried that yet.)

And there you have a very specific, dare I say overblown account of a Uniqlo opening ever! Visit the Orange County location at:

Uniqlo South Coast Plaza (first floor next to Sears and Forever 21)
3333 Bristol St, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

and let me know if you end up getting something! ๐Ÿ˜€


13 thoughts on “Uniqlo South Coast Plaza – Grand Opening

  1. My gripe with Uniqlo is their button placement and how large the IDLF stuff ran. Unusually because she is so tall and slender herself.

  2. You’re so lucky to have a Uniqlo in your area! They seem like a great place to go for classic neutrals. I really appreciate the reviews of the things you tried on, since the only place I can find Uniqlo is online, and you never know what you’re going to get when you buy that way!

    I’m a little surprised that a Japanese brand would be cut so big, though, especially in a collaboration with a European. Or maybe they’re just overestimating the size of the average American? ๐Ÿ™‚

    And, hi, I’m a long time reader/first time commenter of your lovely blog. It’s definitely a favorite. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Thank you Caer! I’m glad the reviews are helping out. Let me know either in the comments or email if there’s something you’re curious about. Hopefully our store will get it in.

      The IDLF collection is all over the place, like my friend Pret a Porter P says. Today I just tried on this shirt and the XS seemed almost like a cropped blouse–the front felt shorter, hitting at the high hip, while the back didn’t give full butt coverage like most of the Uniqlo oxfords do. I still don’t know what’s up with the sizing. I should also be coming up on more sizing info from a coworker who ordered the tan trench–I’ll ask her about it when she gets it in. We Americans come in all shapes and sizes too, hehe.

      Thank you so much for reading and I’m glad you’re enjoying it/finding it useful! ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I like the rayon short sleeve dress, hopefully the size down will be better! The sweatshirt you got is great as well. I’m so looking forward to full Uniqlo opening here too, I will try on everyyyything haha.

    1. The sweatshirt is v. comfy and soft. I haven’t washed it yet–waiting for more clothes, but I plan to air dry it for now…don’t want surprise shrinkage, and our weekends are supposed to hit 95F (35C) so I’m not worried about drying.

      Please do show us what you find in Uniqlo AUS!

  4. I’ve not heard anything about the Pure Blue Japan project and it looks interesting to me. More so than the IDLF collaboration for the autumn which I’ve not gone a bundle on at all. And I was thinking how much you must have shrunk in sizes if you are now taking the XS. That exercise stuff works ;o)

    I think I might be investing in one of those plain sweatshirts soon – I’ve got my eye on a cream one.

    1. I shrank a bunch Sue–it’s actually a bit frustrating to learn that petite lines are now mandatory. I used to fit a Gap and JCrew size 8 no problem, 10P at Lands End. Now I’m either a 0-4 in those companies and I don’t even know where I am at Lands End anymore. I have to re-fit everything.

      I also am frustrated at the vanity sizing occurring in a lot of mall brands. Uniqlo’s falling prey to it too. I’m fitting a size 24 in the Pure Blue Japan project stuff…you’ve got to be kidding me.

    2. Oh and +1 on the sweat shirts–the IDLF one is quite tight though. I got the plain Uniqlo ones (see post for the tag.) The IDLF collaboration sweatshirt is comically bodycon in XS.

  5. I often have the same problem as you when I try on items at Uniqlo – often, the fit is not quite right. Especially when it concerns shirts – as if the womenswear designers forgot that we have breasts and hips. Or maybe it’s linked to being small whereas clothing is made for taller women. Who knows… To answer your question about button downs vs pop over, over time I found that it is more the fabric that matters to me, rather than being able to button it up completely or not. Being small, and a woman, I found crisp cotton to be very unflattering. I found that thin, flowy, draped fabrics work best, because I can size up to give room to the necessary body parts without looking like a potato on the thinner parts of my figure, since the fabric drapes nicely along my body. So silk or equivalents ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope your purchases work out though!

    1. I read this last night and was made hungry by your potato comparison.

      We have hips…but not line backer shoulders! The XS denim shirt was ok shoulders and waist but way tight on hips (suggesting a triangle shape, if you will,) but women aren’t built like that! Very strange sizing.

      I ended up returning the rayon shirt and I thought I’d bite on the dress, but I decided against it. The XS version of the black rayon dress didn’t move comfortably when I raised my arms or when I sat down in the dress, so back on the rack it went.

  6. Hi there,
    Just found your blog and am quite enjoying it. Question on the Pure Blue jeans: are these more like raw denim vs. the super stretch denim that everyone has these days? How does sizing work–ttf? I’m in need of some new jeans and have had great luck with Uniqlo circa 2009, but now so much since then. These look promising, but not sure! Thanks!

    1. Hi Joanna! Thanks for coming by the blog. Here’s some of my impressions re: the Pure Blue Japan denim (I tried on the shorts and these slim boyfriend skinnies):

      My “true” size is about 27, but at Uniqlo I’ve been dipping into 24s and 25s depending on the style. I found myself going down to the 24 for the shorts but I would say the hips are tight but the waistband was loose (I had a gap in the small of my back.) I would not say it’s like raw denim at all–the Pure Blue Japan stuff is already pre-washed and honestly it felt like there was a lot of give to the shorts, despite it being 100% cotton. It’s a very comfortable short; it just didn’t fit my hips and waist right.

      As for the jeans (the slim boyfriend ankle length) I remember the crotch felt odd–maybe a little too low rise than what I’m comfortable with, and again it had the same hip/waistband sizing issues. Also, slim boyfriend kind of sounds like a contradiction, does it not? I didn’t get the boyfriend feel at all–it ended up looking like a straight jean on me and the derriere was unfortunately not super flattering.

      Let me know if there’s anything I can clarify, and I hope this helps! I personally am a big fan of the Ultra Stretch line, and I’ve written some stuff about it on the blog before, but let me know if there’s anything else I can expound on.

      I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog! Thank you for reading it ๐Ÿ™‚

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